What is our faith response to the fact that earnings growth for the richest Americans has been outpacing the income growth of the lower and middle classes since the 1970s?
Without a doubt, macroeconomics is a complicated subject. Supply and demand, regulating a free market, incentives, and international trade creates confusion for even the most financially literate. Therefore, we end up trusting what we’re told by those whom we entrust to tell us what to think about complicated matters, trading on key fears marketable terms elicit the emotional response desired for our votes or our pocketbooks, and we ignore all but the simplest information resulting in illicit blind trust in our political or celebrity leaders. The complicated troubles of macroeconomics – for example: income inequality, oppressive labor, and stateless corporations – makes one wonder if our Christian faith has anything to say beyond personal salvation.
Nevertheless, ours is a tradition of intellectual engagement. We imagine justice, and we know that ultimate, Kingdom of God justice has economic implications. Because we are First Christian Church we at home inhabiting the uncomfortable tension between opinions of fellow believers, and we recognize faith development takes place only when in conversation with the Christ found in my neighbor.
So, you are invited, and I hope you will attend our second Conference for Faith and Learning titled “Economic Justice” next weekend January 16 and 17. Here’s the schedule:
Friday, January 16
6:00 pm Welcome
6:10 pm Documentary viewing
8:00 pm Informal discussion with treats and coffee
Saturday, January 17
9:00 am Welcome
9:10 am Key Note #1: A Theological Perspective on Economic Justice by Ryan Arnold, Senior Minister of First Christian Church
10:30 am Breakout options
11:15 am Breakout options
12:00 pm A simple soup lunch
12:45 pm Key Note #2: A Community Perspective on Economic Justice by Sarai Rice, Executive Director of DMARC
Childcare and elementary-level activities will be provided, and youth are invited to participate in the entire schedule, but will enjoy a special breakout session designed for their concerns. There is a requested donation of $5 per person, though no payment is required.
Please don’t miss this learning opportunity!